Keeping Colton High School informed and entertained since 1917

The Pepper Bough

Why are we more affectionate one day a year?

Jessikah Ybarra, Reporter

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Every year on February 14th we celebrate a day of chocolates, teddy bears, flowers, and love, called St. Valentine’s Day. However some don’t know the real meaning of this day, so why do we celebrate it? Back in Ancient Rome, they held a festival where all the young women would write their names down and put in an urn, and the young men would pick a name and be with that woman for the next year. If they were meant to be together, then they would stay together. If they weren’t, then the next year they would do the same thing again. This festival was held every year on February 15th, but we celebrate it on the 14th because that’s usually when the birds start mating. Every year for 800 years the Romans dedicated this day to the god Lupercus.

Pope Gelasius, however, did not like this custom so he changed it so both men and women were able to draw names of who they would court for the next year. For the men, it was still an occasion where they sought affection from women and then became an occasion where they would write handwritten letters of admiration in the Valentine’s name. So the next time you get a gift for your Valentine, think of what the Roman’s had to do back in Ancient Rome, and be grateful that you don’t have to be with a stranger for an entire year instead with someone you want to be with.

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Keeping Colton High School informed and entertained since 1917
Why are we more affectionate one day a year?